Social Media Marketing Plan

Social Media Marketing Plan for Self-Starters

The single most important factor in how well your social media marketing works is your strategy.

Without a strategy, all you’re doing is posting to social for the sake of posting. Without business goals, and an understanding of who your audience is – and what they want – you’ll be hard-pressed to see any results on social media.

But if you don’t know what you’re doing, coming up with that strategy can be daunting. That’s why we’re here with something of a social media marketing plan sample, to help you get yours off the ground.

How to Create a Social Media Marketing Plan – Sample

In a nutshell, social media marketing is the use of social media platforms to connect and form relationships with your audience. This helps build your brand, increase sales, and drive valuable traffic to your website.

The best way to see these benefits is with a social media strategy. The best strategies start with the 5Ws:

  1. Why do you want/need to be on social?
  2. Who are your potential customers?
  3. What content will you share?
  4. Where will you share it?
  5. When will you share it?

1. Why do you want/need to be on social media? – Social Media Goals

Why are you on social in the first place? A clear social media goal will help focus your strategy.

Generally speaking, there are nine common social media goals to choose from:

  • Increase brand awareness.
  • Drive traffic to your website.
  • Generate new leads.
  • Grow revenue through signups or sales.
  • Boost engagement.
  • Build a community.
  • Provide improved customer service.
  • Increase PR.
  • Listen in on conversations about your brand.

It’s a good idea to start off with just a few goals and expand your strategy once you’ve achieved them.

2. Who are your potential customers? – Target Audience

Understanding your target audience is the next critical step and will help you answer the questions that follow it.

For example, if a sports apparel brand knows that their target audience loves to watch basketball, they could share content related to the NBA on their social media profiles.

An excellent way to approach this is with a “buyer persona” – a hypothetically typical member of your target audience. Get in their heads with the 5Ws and 1H:

  • Who are they? (Job title, age, gender, salary, location, etc.)
  • What are their interests that intersect with your brand? (Educational content, case studies, info on new products, etc.)
  • Where are they online? (Facebook, Twitter, niche platforms, etc.)
  • When do they consume content? (Daily commute, lunch hour, weekends, etc.)
  • How do they prefer to consume content? (Watch videos, read blogs, etc.)

You probably won’t have to start from scratch on your buyer personas, especially if you’ve been in business a while and have a good sense of your potential clientele.

3. What content will you share? – Create Content Themes

Without diving too far into the weeds of the benefits and problems associated with all the different types of content, it’s important to decide on a “theme” to help guide the style and tone for all the content you share.

Some brands, like fashion or clothing brands, focus on sharing user generated content supplied by their customers and followers. Others, like hiking apparel or travel businesses, stick to editorial content and high-quality photos and videos. Humour in the form of memes is another common approach for businesses with a less formal personality, like a skateboard brand.

Deciding on the types of content to share largely depends on your understanding of your target audience. Consult with your buyer persona and consider:

  • What are their goals and challenges?
  • How can you help them rise to meet them?

4. Where will you share? – Social Networks

The next step is to decide where you’re going to share all this valuable content. In other words, which social networks will be most valuable for your brand to join?

Remember: You don’t have to be on every platform. Choose the social networks that will have the most impact. Again, having a strong understanding of your buyer persona and target audience will come in handy here.

Which platforms do they use most? Why? Don’t overlook some of the more niche social platforms if your audience frequents them.

For example, Instagram is popular with teenagers and young adults, who like to see what their friends are doing or if their favourite brands have new products available.

It’s also wise to consider your brand’s own “X Factor.” Are your product photos stunning? Do you have fun or informative videos already produced? Certain platforms lend themselves to certain types of content.

For example, Instagram is ideal for photos, long-form videos go on YouTube, and Medium is great for well-written, informative, and valuable articles and blog posts.

5. When will you share? – Timing of Social Media Posts

The final part of your social media marketing plan must be deciding when you want to post the content you’ve created. But before you simply dive in and search for “best time to post,” take a step back and consider your buyer persona once more.

When do they usually use social media to find the kind of content you’ll be sharing?

  • Sports fans might be on social before, during, and after sporting events.
  • Travel enthusiasts might be on social on the weekends, planning their next trip.
  • Students might be online in the early afternoon after school.

As you can see, there is no one “best time.” It all depends on your audience.

Focus on Your Business Goals

Creating a social media marketing plan can be a difficult task because you need to take a step back from the daily grind to look at the big picture, especially when it comes to the goals you hope to achieve.

But it’s also a rewarding and valuable process that ensures you’re on the path to your goals, and not just posting content for the sheer sake of posting content.

Are you looking for someone to help you through the details of developing a social media marketing plan that works? Book your free, no obligation consultation with Asset Digital Communications today, and start seeing the growth you’re looking for!